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Bacolod City, Philippines Monday, April 6, 2015
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with Ninfa Leonardia
OPINIONS

Marwan is truly dead

Ninfa Leonardia The FBI has spoken: Zulfikli Bin Hir, alias “Marwan”, is dead. Really dead. Remember that even after the survivors of the Mamasapano Massacre had declared that they had succeeded in the mission to arrest or neutralize Marwan, doubts still continue to hang in the air that the person who was killed in that shack in Mamasapano, and whose finger had been cut off for DNA testing, was somebody else. But this weekend, the famous Federal Bureau of Investigation of the United States of America had finally confirmed that, indeed, it was the long wanted terrorist who had been shot dead by the men of the Special Action Force of the Police.

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So now the United States itself, one of the countries also searching for Marwan, and, between you and me, supposedly the one who had tipped off the SAF men on the presence and location of Marwan, had accepted the findings of its laboratories and has stricken off the name of Zulfikli bin Hir from its wanted list. So that is one terrorist peace-loving countries no longer have to worry about. But how many hundreds are there of their ilk, or their disciples who continue to go around, training people on terroristic activities and plans, and teaching them how to make bombs?

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Who were the evil ones who attacked a school in Kenya and massacred 148 people, mostly young ones, who were innocent and did not have anything to do with causes? The attackers are reportedly members of the ISIS, and what should the rest of the world be doing to eliminate them? Again we saw desperate footages of grieving families whose members were among the victims of the heartless killing spree. And this happened on a very holy and significant day for Christians, Easter Sunday.

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In the meantime, we in the Philippines have much to be thankful for because the expected onslaught of so-called Supertyphoon Chedeng, was reported to have weakened to just a low pressure area, or LPA before reaching our country during the most important days of Holy Week. It is true, indeed, that prayers were answered, and also that prayers of little children are most likely to be heeded and granted by the Lord. During a Church visit on Holy Week, our young grandniece was noted by her grandpa praying with clasped hands. Asked what she was praying for, she answered, “I prayed to God to send the typhoon away”.

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The latest on the tragic fate of the people on board the Germanwings aircraft that had been deliberately sent plummeting down over the Franch Alps to eventually smash into the side of one of its mountains, is that the second black box of the plane had been found. However, as far as the behavior and reactions of the people inside the plane were concerned, those were already found out from the initial one. It has been explained that what the second box records are more on the technical aspects of the flight, and it showed that the craze co-pilot had sent it on very fast descent before crashing it. How could one not feel goose pimples on hearing reports that the passengers and probably the crew, were screaming and crying “Oh God” in different languages?

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After this, we hope that all employers, particularly those who operate airlines and other transportation companies, will make sure that their prospective employees are cleared, not only for their physical health, but most thoroughly for their mental condition. The Germanwings tragedy would not have taken place had the airline gotten hold of his medical records that showed the state of his mental health, for which he was found out to be taking medication – that apparently, did not work. Now all we can say for the lost 149 people is that God will bless their souls. We don't care what happens to be the 150 th one, who intentionally sent them all to their death.

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We don't want to sound morbid, but in yesterday's news, there was also a report of a helicopter accident in Malaysia that exploded in mid-air, killing one of the country's top officials. An investigation has been ordered, and it will not be farfetched to suspect that terrorists, once more, have something to do with it. But since it happened during the weekend when Maysak was expected, could its winds not have somehow affected the flight of that chopper? It seems more care should be taken about flying during expected bad weather.

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Remember Vice Governor Jolo Revilla of the Cavite dynasty, who had to be hospitalized for several weeks after supposedly shooting himself accidentally, with his own gun? He is lucky to have received immediate and appropriate treatment, and has survived, but still has not reported to work. Now we hear he wants to go abroad to seek treatment, for, believe it or not, migraine! Couldn't the specialists who cured him of a bullet would find a way, or refer him to their colleagues who know how to treat migraine? Some people I know who suffer from it, deal with an attack by just drinking lots and lots of water.*

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